Tomato abuse

29 January, 2010

I have a theory: you can no more decide to sit and work very hard every day than you could suddenly decide to run a marathon every day. (Assuming, of course, that you are not Eddie Izzard.)

So I have been abusing the Pomodoro Technique by setting targets for the number of tomatoes completed each day, with the intent of increasing the target over time. This is not how you are supposed to tomato, but it seems to be helping.

Am I doin' it wrong?


Threats to validity*: tomatoes are supposed to be pure focused work, but it doesn’t always happen that way. I will still catch myself staring into space thinking about magpies or something now and then. And of course, working hard is not the same as working smart: putting in many hours on the wrong thing doesn’t help.

Currently, the target is 12. What I find hard to understand is that 12 tomatoes will easily take the best part of the day and leave me mentally exhausted… but when you do the maths that’s only five hours of work. What was I doing the rest of the time? (Answer: mostly, cooking**, eating, cleaning things and running, none of which I want to cut down on.) And as for my brain melting, I’m sure when I was a Real Person I used to manage more than that on a daily basis. Here’s hoping I’m right about the training theory.

A question for anyone else using the Technique: how many tomatoes before your brain melts, and why?

* Ok, I have been reading too many papers recently
** Too proud for ready-meals, too poor to eat out all the time. This may be my downfall.

One comment

  1. […] Technique worked for me for a while, but recent weeks have been distinctly low on work, and the reboot didn’t help*. This is a sad […]

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